NYC Top Comedy Choices for December 2019: Last Updated Thursday 12/19

December 19, 2019

I’m one of the finest ghostwriters in the country; my 20+ books include two New York Times bestsellers, a phenom megaseller that hit #16 on Amazon.com and has sold over 330,000 print copies to date, and an interview book with legendary author Neil Gaiman that hit #240 on Amazon.com. I’ve also written five Dummies books and a Complete Idiot’s Guide. I cover comedy as a labor of love. But if you need help with a book, let’s chat, because there’s no one better at ghostwriting, editing, and/or coaching. To learn more about my services, please visit BookProposal.net and then email me at hy@hyreviews.com.

Do you like cross-genre stories (fantasy/comedy, SF/comedy, fantasy/horror, etc.)? Please visit my podcast, Ghosts On Drugs, by clicking here.

Please note that these listings are updated frequently. The best way to be instantly notified about new show postings is to subscribe to this BestNewYorkComedy.com blog and allow for email notifications.

Other ways to keep up are to follow me on Twitter at @hybender, and/or to visit the desktop and ad-free version of this site at HyReviews.com. (I’m also on Instagram at @hybenderny and Facebook at hybender; but honestly, you’ll be doing me the most good if you follow and retweet me on Twitter.)

In addition, you can use the links below to explore the schedules of all the major comedy venues in NYC; and you can find excellent live comedy recommendations weekly via The New York Times.

That said, my top NYC comedy recommendations for December 2019 (with more to come soon) include:

Molly Gaebe & Kylie Holloway: "Nevertheless She Existed-Female Spies"Thursday 12/19: Hosts Molly Gaebe & Kylie Holloway invite female storytellers, comics, and historians to share the tales of “some of the greatest women the world has ever known, but history erased” for this live-on-stage podcast recording, with this week’s theme Female Spies tackled by guests the fabulous Tallie Medel (above left; Cocoon Central Dance Team), Anna Cain Bianco (above right; FringeNYC), Junior Mint, and Solange Azor: Nevertheless She Existed: The Spy Who Inspired Me (5:30 pm for an all-gals networking discussion of how the podcast is made, 6:30 pm for a happy half-hour, and 7:00 pm for show; $17 online or $20 at the door; LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street—take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Shane Gillis & Abby Rosenquist: Thursday 12/19: Starting with the leftmost window: Mark Normand (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; Conan O’Brien, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s 2 Dope Queens, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; Comedy Central Half Hour, stellar Comedy Central special Don’t Be Yourself, comedy album Still Got It; hosts podcast Tuesdays With Stories; tours with Amy Schumer), Luis J. Gomez (Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, NBC’s Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Guy Code, TruTV; co-host of Sirius XM’s The Countdown and podcast Legion of Skanks), Ahamed Weinberg (Stephen Colbert, Seth Meyers, HBO’s Insecure, IFC’s Comedy Bang Bang, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show, Hulu, TruTV), Chanel Ali (MTV’s Girl Code, Starz, TruTV), Andrew Casertano, and Mike Recine (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour) perform stand-up for hosts Shane Gillis (co-host of Matt and Shane’s Secret Podcast, frequent guest on Sirius XM’s The Bonfire) & Abby Rosenquist (Fuse TV): Citywide (7:00 pm, $10 cover and no min., The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

David Lawson: Thursday 12/19: Superb storyteller David Lawson (Comedy Central; solo shows include The Flyer Guy, No Oddjob, The Prequels; host of The Astoria Bookshop Storytelling Show) performs a one-man show “standing onstage judging people who are seeking The White House in 2020. The only qualification David has? He’s read their books:” David Lawson’s 2020 Book Report (7:30 pm, $15, The Kraine Theatre at 85 East 4th Street off Second Avenue; followed at 9:00 pm by a live screening of the Democratic Debate)

Johnathan Appel & Zach Lennon-Simon: Thursday 12/19: This show’s goal is to, for one hour, make you a little happier through niceness. It features “some very nice performers who all say very nice things” via stand-up, storytelling, satire, and/or music. Regular very nice segments between each very nice act include ‘Super Easy Trivia,’ ‘Unironic Dad Jokes,’ and ‘Happy Headlines.’ It’s all hosted by Johnathan Appel (writer for The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, and PIT sketch group Boogiemanja; Producer & Teaching Artist for Story Pirates; host of Some Fun Lines, the only open mic for satire & humor writing) & Zach Lennon-Simon (writer/director/editor of documentary Shakertown Road; cinematographer for documentary The Dark Side of Disney). Isn’t that nice?: Very Nice People Saying Very Nice Things (7:30 pm, $7, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

There's No Debating ThisThursday 12/19: Stand-up from Mark Normand (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; Conan O’Brien, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s 2 Dope Queens, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; Comedy Central Half Hour, stellar Comedy Central special Don’t Be Yourself, comedy album Still Got It; hosts podcast Tuesdays With Stories; tours with Amy Schumer), Nimesh Patel (exceptionally sharp stand-up; staff writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central, TruTV; written for Chris Rock hosting the 2016 Oscars; co-host of Broken Comedy), Aminah Imani (host with Sydnee Washington & Marie Faustin of highly popular weekly Brooklyn stand-up showcase Comedy at The Knit; host of podcast Wine Before Nine), Monroe Martin (David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, finalist on Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central’s The Jim Gaffigan Show, Netflix’s Master of None; host of podcast No Need for Apologies), Tim Dillon (Comedy Central, Netflix, Last Comic Standing; podcast Tim Dillon is Going to Hell), Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentaries 25 Sets, A Universal Language, co-host of CompoundMedia.com’s In Hot Water and The Stand’s Frantic!), and Mehran Khaghani (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, MTV, IFC, TruTV; co-hosts Sirius XM’s Paid or Pain): There’s No Debating This (8:00 pm, $15, The Stand Mainstage at 116 East 16th Street)

Democratic Presidential Debate 6: December 2019Thursday 12/19: Come join a comedy-loving group watch seven Democratic Presidential candidates debate for the sixth, and last, time this year, moderated in LA by the PBS Newshour and Politico, and enhanced in Queens NYC by the lightning-quick wit of host Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic) and other comics TBA: Democratic Debate Watch Party: PBS/Politico Edition (9:00 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Too Many CooksThursday 12/19: This free stand-up show with rotating hosts—tonight it’s Chanel Ali (MTV’s Girl Code, Starz, TruTV)—features Sean Patton (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien; Comedy Central’s Half Hour, This Week at the Comedy Cellar, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, This Is Not Happening, The Meltdown; VH1, TruTV, IFC, Viceland), Bonnie McFarlane (HBO, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Presents special; co-host of My Wife Hates Me podcast; author of You’re Better Than Me), Subhah Agarwal (writer for Comedy Central’s The Jim Jefferies Show; TruTV, Fusion), Kate Willett (Comedy Central’s The Jim Jeffries Show and This Is Not Happening; VICE’s Flophouse, Netflix’s Comedy Lineup; comedy album Glass Gutter), Petey DeAbreu (host of Petey’s World and co-host of White Chocolate), Samantha Ruddy (Stephen Colbert; warm-up comic for Full Frontal with Samantha Bee; written for College Humor, Reductress, Someecards), JP McDade (Comedy Central’s Roast Battle II, TruTV; writer for webseries Sports Balls), and more: Too Many Cooks (9:00 pm, Free!, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Risk 12-19-19.jpgThursday 12/19: Comedic storytellers Melanie Hamlett (above left; stellar storyteller briefly back in NYC for the holidays), Rory Scholl (above, right of Melanie; Chicago City Limits, The Moth, BTK Band; co-host of QED show Two-Prov), Carolyn Castiglia (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, VH1; for sample of Carolyn as white rapper, please click here), and Jenna K join pioneering sketch comic and storyteller Kevin Allison (The State; owner of The Story Studio) at what’s typically one of the finest storytelling shows in the country: Risk! (9:30 pm, $15, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street—take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

There's No Debating ThisThursday 12/19: Stand-up from Mark Normand (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; Conan O’Brien, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s 2 Dope Queens, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; Comedy Central Half Hour, stellar Comedy Central special Don’t Be Yourself, comedy album Still Got It; hosts podcast Tuesdays With Stories; tours with Amy Schumer), Derek Gaines (Jaybird on The Last O.G.; NBC’s Will & Grace; former host of MTV’s Broke A$$ Game Show), Nina Daniels (The Last O.G., Showtime’s Shameless, Maron), Corinne Fisher (with comedy partner Krystyna Hutchinson, host of popular Guys We Fucked podcast & stage show, and author of F*CKED: Being Sexually Explorative and Self-Confident in a World That’s Screwed), Paul Virzi (hour-long special I’ll Say This, currently streaming on Comedy Central; TruTV, FOX; host of podcast The Virzi Effect; stand-up album Night at The Stand, which hit #1 on iTunes; tours with Bill Burr), Tim Dillon (Comedy Central, Netflix, Last Comic Standing; podcast Tim Dillon is Going to Hell), and Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; co-host of podcast History Hyenas): There’s No Debating This (10:00 pm, $15, The Stand Mainstage at 116 East 16th Street)

Podcast StarsFriday 12/20: Stand-up from audio comedy masters Corinne Fisher & Krystyna Hutchinson (hosts of wildly popular Guys We Fucked podcast & stage show, and authors of F*CKED: Being Sexually Explorative and Self-Confident in a World That’s Screwed), Nikki Glaser (host of You Up on SiriusXM; star of former Comedy Central series Not Safe; Comedy Central and Netflix specials; films Trainwreck and I Feel Pretty), Rosebud Baker (Comedy Central; co-host with Corinne of podcast Two Less Lonely Girls; also a notable podcast guest here and here), and Hannah Berner (cast of Bravo’s Summer House; host of podcast Berning In Hell): Podcast Stars (7:00 pm, $20, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Mark Vigeant's Friday 12/20: The world of Influencers is explored by host Mark Vigeant (Funny Or Die, Prairie Home Companion) with Sally Burtnick (comic who tried to become an influencer in one month), Tim Jeffreys (Influencer Expert & Marketing Director at Fohr), and working influencers Eva Goicochea (founder and CEO of Maude), Lauren Caruso (Managing Editor of the Zoe Report), Angelique Miles (fitness influencer), YanYi (fashion & lifestyle blogger), and Nicole Loher (runner & fitness Influencer): Internet Explorers: Influencers (7:00 pm; $12, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

The Scientists: Friday 12/20: Lectures and/or stand-up in some way related to this month’s theme Rats from Ariel Dumas (Head Writer for Late Show with Stephen Colbert), Usama Siddiquee (Showtime’s Desus and Mero), Jessica Henderson (co-creator of webseries Growing Down), and more TBA hosted by Blythe Roberson (The New Yorker, The Onion, McSweeney’s; author of book How to Date Men When You Hate Men) & Madelyn Freed (ace improvisor & computer programmer): The Scientists (7:30 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Lynn Bixenspan & Morgan Pielli: Friday 12/20: Storytellers TBA share tales of relationships in front of a panel of comics and bona fide therapists who then provide their professional advice, hosted by Lynn Bixenspan (Comedy Central, MTV; former writer for Fuse TV) & Morgan Pielli (cartoonist): Relationshit (7:30 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

The Stand 12-20-19Friday 12/20: Stand-up by Nikki Glaser (host of You Up on SiriusXM; star of former Comedy Central series Not Safe; Comedy Central and Netflix specials; films Trainwreck and I Feel Pretty), Rich Vos (stand-up star on two seasons of Last Comic Standing and on Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn; Comedy Central Presents; Opie & Anthony radio show, co-host of My Wife Hates Me podcast), Rachel Feinstein (HBO’s Crashing, Amazon’s Red Oaks, Netflix’s The Standups, Comedy Central special Only Whores Wear Purple; finalist on Last Comic Standing; Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Inside Amy Schumer, The View; films include Trainwreck and Top Five), Mike Vecchione (Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central’s Half Hour and Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern; stand-up album Muscle Confusion), Vladimir Caamaño (Jimmy Kimmel, CW), Kerryn Feehan (Comedy Central, TruTV, Spike TV; co-host of Frantic), and more: Stars at The Stand (8:00 pm, $25, The Stand Mainstage at 116 East 16th Street)

X-MAS: A Merry Mutant Musical in ConcertFriday 12/20: “When a mutant-hunting robot decimates the X-Men mansion on Christmas Eve, can our heroes overcome their differences to create the best X-Mas yet? Not if that grinch Magneto has anything to say about it!” This musical’s book & lyrics are by Sarah A. Mucek and its music by Christian Duhamel; for a sample from 2017, please click here. There are just two chances to experience the show this year at The PIT, tonight and Saturday: X-MAS: A Merry Mutant Musical in Concert (8:00 pm, $17.35 in advance online or $20 at the door, The PIT Mainstage (Striker) at 123 East 24th Street)

Friday Night Stand-Up at The StandFriday 12/20: Stand-up by Nikki Glaser (host of You Up on SiriusXM; star of former Comedy Central series Not Safe; Comedy Central and Netflix specials; films Trainwreck and I Feel Pretty), Rachel Feinstein (HBO’s Crashing, Amazon’s Red Oaks, Netflix’s The Standups, Comedy Central special Only Whores Wear Purple; finalist on Last Comic Standing; Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Inside Amy Schumer, The View; films include Trainwreck and Top Five), Rosebud Baker (Comedy Central; co-host with Corinne Fisher of podcast Two Less Lonely Girls), Vladimir Caamaño (Jimmy Kimmel, CW), Paul Virzi (hour-long special I’ll Say This, currently streaming on Comedy Central; TruTV, FOX; host of podcast The Virzi Effect; stand-up album Night at The Stand, which hit #1 on iTunes; tours with Bill Burr), Charles Engle (co-host of podcast Please Send Nudes), and more: Friday Night Stand-Up at The Stand (9:00 pm, $20, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Blank! The MusicalFriday 12/20: Musical improvisors—typically including the stellar and multi-talented Desi Domo (Comedy Central’s Alternatino; film The Conjuring; UCB’s Characters Welcome; indie improv group Miles From Pete) make up the story, songs, and dances of a new musical on the spot based on “fill in the blank” audience suggestions: Blank! The Musical (9:30 pm; $22.60 in advance online or $25 at the door; The PIT Loft at 154 West 29th Street)

Sloan Brettholtz & Julie Tran: Friday 12/20: Comedy duo Sloan Brettholtz & Julie Tran perform dark and silly sketches they’re written for the holidays: Dark With a Chance of Stupid (9:30 pm, $12, The PIT Mainstage (Striker) at 123 East 24th Street)

Shame!: The Not-So-Honorable Comedy ShowFriday 12/20: Storytellers TBA share cringe-worthy experiences from their pasts hosted by Brendan Busee & Ron Raganella: Shame!: The Not-So-Honorable Comedy Show (9:30 pm, $8, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Lorelei Ramirez, Amy Zimmer, and Sam Taggart: "New Material from Decaying Minds"Friday 12/20: New material from wonderfully innovative comics Lorelei Ramirez, Clare O’Kane, Becca O Neal, Amy Zimmer, Alex English, Edy Modica, Sam Taggart, and Jordan Temple: New Material from Decaying Minds (10:00 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Stars at The StandFriday 12/20: Stand-up by Mike Vecchione (Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central’s Half Hour and Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern; stand-up album Muscle Confusion), Rich Vos (stand-up star on two seasons of Last Comic Standing and on Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn; Comedy Central Presents; Opie & Anthony radio show, co-host of My Wife Hates Me podcast; new album When I Saw Hamilton), Rachel Feinstein (HBO’s Crashing, Amazon’s Red Oaks, Netflix’s The Standups, Comedy Central special Only Whores Wear Purple; finalist on Last Comic Standing; Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Inside Amy Schumer, The View; films include Trainwreck and Top Five), Vladimir Caamaño (Jimmy Kimmel, CW), Tim Dillon (Comedy Central, Netflix, Last Comic Standing; podcast Tim Dillon is Going to Hell), Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; co-host of podcast History Hyenas), and more: Stars at The Stand (10:00 pm, $25, The Stand Mainstage at 116 East 16th Street)

The Star Wars Holiday SpecialFriday 12/20: In the wise words of media critic Cyndi Freeman: “The Star Wars Holiday Special was broadcast in its entirety only once, in the United States and Canada, on November 17, 1978, preempting Wonder Woman and The Incredible Hulk. It has never been rebroadcast or officially released on home video. David Hofstede called it ‘the worst two hours of television ever.’ George Lucas has reportedly said ‘If I had the time and a sledgehammer, I would track down every copy of that show and smash it.‘” See it screened, dissected, and mercilessly savaged tonight by Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), Kat Burdick (Moth Grandslam champion; webseries KCK; host of Let’s Say You’re Right), Rory Scholl (Chicago City Limits, The Moth, BTK Band; co-host of QED show Two-Prov), and Derek Humphrey (ABC, MTV, host of podcast Derek Mansplains It All) hosted by Chris Gersbeck (host of Casual Sets, Soft Core!, and Bunk Bed Time Open Mic; producer of numerous comedy shows): Movies R Dumb: The Star Wars Holiday Special (11:00 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Late Night Stand-Up at The StandFriday 12/20: Stand-up by Luis J. Gomez (Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, NBC’s Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Guy Code, TruTV; co-host of Sirius XM’s The Countdown and podcast Legion of Skanks), Rosebud Baker (Comedy Central; co-host with Corinne Fisher of podcast Two Less Lonely Girls), Subhah Agarwal (writer for Comedy Central’s The Jim Jefferies Show; TruTV, Fusion), Crystal Marie (Jane the Virgin, Real Husbands of Hollywood, Quality Problems), Josh Wesson (Comedy Central, MTV2, FX), Vladimir Caamaño (Jimmy Kimmel, CW), Mo Vida, Richie Redding (toured with Katt Williams), and Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; co-host of podcast History Hyenas): Late Night Stand-Up at The Stand (11:00 pm, $20, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Desiree Burch: "Desiree's Coming Early"Friday 12/20: Veteran NYC comic turned Londoner Desiree Burch (Netflix’s Flinch, Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, Live from the BBC, New York Neo-Futurists) describes her award-winning solo show as follows: “Have you ever been caught in a loop? Does the arc of history bend toward justice or chaos? What if it’s just a massive spiral we are all stuck in, being sucked back into the void? How do we escape the narratives that determine our lives in spite of our drives? And how does a black girl with an expensive education and a faltering sense of self-confidence cross an actual desert to reconcile her first-world problems with the cracks she’s had to climb through in order to even have them? I dunno…some dancing, drugs, and a quest for d*ck? Have you ever been caught in a loop?…At a moment in history where societal progress has swung back around to authoritarianism and regression, Desiree embarks on a journey of mythically ridiculous proportions into the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, to figure out how she, and all of us, have gotten here, and how we might turn the dial and alter the course for those of us still to come.” There are just two performances with tickets left, tonight and Monday: Desiree’s Coming Early (11:00 pm; $23.75 using code BESTLIFE online, otherwise $39 at the door; Soho Playhouse at 15 Vandam Street; take the C/E subway to Spring Street or 1 subway to Houston Street)

Podcast StarsSaturday 12/21: Stand-up from audio comedy vets Hannah Berner (cast of Bravo’s Summer House; host of podcast Berning In Hell), Kim Congdon (writer for Impractical Jokers; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV; host of podcast/YouTube series Broad Topix), Kerryn Feehan (Comedy Central, TruTV, Spike TV; co-host of free Monday stand-up showcase Frantic; frequent guest on podcasts Keith and The Girl, Guys we Fucked, Myka Fox and Friends, and more), Ashley Hesseltine (co-host of podcast Girls Gotta Eat), and Remy Kassimir (host of Sunday stand-up show Bacon Bits Brunch; co-host of podcasts How Cum and We Really Love Island): Podcast Stars (7:00 pm, $20, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Johnathan Appel and Marina di Marzo 2Saturday 12/21: Indie character group Poughkeepsie—which consists of Johnathan Appel (above left; writer for The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, and PIT sketch group Boogiemanja; Producer & Teaching Artist for Story Pirates; host of Some Fun Lines, the only open mic for satire & humor writing), Marina di Marzo (above right; Producer for CNN’s Reliable Sources with Brian Stelter; previously Associate Producer for MSNBC’s The Beat with Ari Melber), Hugh Hobbs, Rafael Rautha, Kevin Necciai, Mary Nepi, Julia Ogilvie, and Kathleen Cameron—performs brand new characters every month to surprise and delight you: Poughkeepsie’s Character Showcase (7:00 pm, $12, The PIT Underground at 123 East 24th Street)

Chanukahstravaganza 2.jpgSaturday 12/21: The Christmas season can get a bit lonely for Jews. So Jewish hosts Lana Schwartz (The New Yorker, Vulture; author of Build Your Own Romantic Comedy) & Ilana Michelle Rubin (webseries deada$$ and Pluto Girl; host of music podcast The Bop Pad) have called on Jewish NYC comics to come gather for this show celebrating “the Miracle of Lights: Chanukah. Hannukah. Hanukah. However you choose to spell it. There will be songs, there will be laughter, there will be surprises, and you know there will be snacks,” with Emmy Blotnick, Josh Gondelman, Naomi Ekperigin, Alison Leiby, Matt Koff, Anna Roisman, Jess Salomon, Charles Gould, Charlie Bardey, and Yaari Nadav Tal: The Fourth Annual Chanukahstravaganza: Brighter Than Ever (7:30 pm, $12, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Beth StelllingSaturday 12/21: Beth Stelling (Jimmy Kimmel, Conan O’Brien, Chelsea Lately; Comedy Central’s Half Hour, @midnight, Corporate, and High Court; Netflix special The Standups 1.5; Amazon’s Red Oaks; written for HBO’s Crashing, Comedy Central’s Another Period, and Hulu’s I Love You America with Sara Silverman) performs a solo stand-up show in Brooklyn: Beth Stelling (7:30 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s The Bell House at 149 7th Street; take R subway to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Avenue)

Rob Paravonian's Saturday 12/21: Music, comedy, and more from performers TBA hosted by Rob Paravonian (Comedy Central, VH1; to watch his hit video Pachelbel Rant, which has been viewed by over 15 million people on YouTube, please click here): The Odd Rock Comedy Hour (7:30 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

The Stand 12-21-19Saturday 12/21: Stand-up by Mike Vecchione (Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central’s Half Hour and Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern; stand-up album Muscle Confusion), Rich Vos (stand-up star on two seasons of Last Comic Standing and on Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn; Comedy Central Presents; Opie & Anthony radio show, co-host of My Wife Hates Me podcast; new album When I Saw Hamilton), Derek Gaines (Jaybird on The Last O.G.; NBC’s Will & Grace; former host of MTV’s Broke A$$ Game Show) , Yamaneika Saunders (HBO’s Crashing, NBC’s Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Roast Battle; stand-up album Damsel in Distress), @Yamaneika (@HBO, @NBC, CC), Josh Wesson (Comedy Central, MTV2, FX), and Tim Dillon (Comedy Central, Netflix, Last Comic Standing; podcast Tim Dillon is Going to Hell): Stars at The Stand (8:00 pm, $25, The Stand Mainstage at 116 East 16th Street)

Josh Gondelman, Lane Moore, Hari Kondabolu, and Frank Conniff: Saturday 12/21: A show celebrating the app that redefined online dating, with the lovely and quick-witted Lane Moore (above middle; author of bestselling book How to Be Alone; HBO’s Girls; Sex & Relationship Editor of Cosmo; writer for The Onion, McSweeney’s) going on a live Tinder safari for guys while a packed audience watches her every choice with fascination. Offering comments and suggestions are guests Josh Gondelman (left; one of the sharpest comics in the country; writer/producer for Showtime’s Desus & Mero; previously Emmy & Peabody Award-winning writer/producer for HBO’s phenom Last Week Tonight with John Oliver; Conan O’Brien, The New Yorker; author of book Nice Try; stand-up albums Dancing On a Weeknight and Physical Whisper), Hari Kondabolu (top right; fresh, sharp, rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents; fascinating TruTV documentary The Problem with Apu; Netflix special Warn Your Relatives; co-host of Kondabolu Brothers podcast), and Frank Conniff (bottom right; TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic) : Tinder Live (8:30 pm, $18 at the door or $19.51-$22.76 online; Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

North Coast hip-hop improvSaturday 12/21: Every Saturday night, a highly talented freestyle rapping long form improv group takes the stage for an hour: North Coast (9:00 pm, $12, The PIT Underground at 123 East 24th Street)

Emmy Blotnick, Josh Gondelman, Usama Siddiquee, and Sydnee WashingtonSaturday 12/21: Great lineup of Emmy Blotnick (brilliant and Emmy-nominated rising star stand-up who’s performed on Stephen Colbert and in a Comedy Central Half Hour; staff writer for Stephen Colbert; comedy album Party Nights), Josh Gondelman (one of the sharpest comics in the country; writer/producer for Showtime’s Desus & Mero; previously Emmy & Peabody Award-winning writer/producer for HBO’s phenom Last Week Tonight with John Oliver; Conan O’Brien, The New Yorker; author of book Nice Try; stand-up albums Dancing On a Weeknight and Physical Whisper), Usama Siddiquee (Showtime’s Desus and Mero), and Sydnee Washington (Conan O’Brien, MTV2’s Vidiots; host with Marie Faustin of podcast The Unofficial Expert; host with Marie Faustin & Aminah Imani of highly popular weekly Brooklyn stand-up showcase Comedy at The Knit) performing stand-up by sandwiching new jokes in between time-tested opening and closing material for hosts Gastor Almonte (Comedy Central’s This Is Not Happening, host of Stoops2Stages, co-host of I’m Dead Comedy, comedy album Immigrant Made) & Jess Salomon (former UN war crimes attorney turned comic; Jimmy Fallon, CBS, Sirius XM): Sandwich (10:00 pm, $8, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

X-MAS: A Merry Mutant Musical in ConcertFriday 12/20: “When a mutant-hunting robot decimates the X-Men mansion on Christmas Eve, can our heroes overcome their differences to create the best X-Mas yet? Not if that grinch Magneto has anything to say about it!” This musical’s book & lyrics are by Sarah A. Mucek and its music by Christian Duhamel; for a sample from 2017, please click here. This is the final performance of its two-night PIT run: X-MAS: A Merry Mutant Musical in Concert (10:00 pm, $17.35 in advance online or $20 at the door, The PIT Mainstage (Striker) at 123 East 24th Street)

Jessy Morner-Ritt: Sunday 12/22: In the near future—2021—Joy (Jessy Morner-Ritt) is the only who still cares about upholding Bed and Breakfast culture. This immersive comedy show features air mattresses and pillow mints; stand-up from Rachel Kaly, Celeste Yim; and host Jessy Morner-Ritt, and performances from Ana McCasland and Rajat Suresh: Joy’s Bed and Breakfast (8:00 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

How to Meditate with Andrew SteinerSunday 12/22: An autobiographical show by Andrew Steiner (host of the podcast True K) about his studying meditation with Zen masters at a temple in Japan—and especially his experiences with Shodo Harada Roshi, sometimes called the Nuclear Reactor of Zen: How To Meditate: Jokes, Burlesque, and Guided Meditation (8:30 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Desiree Burch: "Desiree's Coming Early"Monday 12/23: Veteran NYC comic turned Londoner Desiree Burch (Netflix’s Flinch, Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, Live from the BBC, New York Neo-Futurists) describes her award-winning solo show as follows: “Have you ever been caught in a loop? Does the arc of history bend toward justice or chaos? What if it’s just a massive spiral we are all stuck in, being sucked back into the void? How do we escape the narratives that determine our lives in spite of our drives? And how does a black girl with an expensive education and a faltering sense of self-confidence cross an actual desert to reconcile her first-world problems with the cracks she’s had to climb through in order to even have them? I dunno…some dancing, drugs, and a quest for d*ck? Have you ever been caught in a loop?…At a moment in history where societal progress has swung back around to authoritarianism and regression, Desiree embarks on a journey of mythically ridiculous proportions into the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, to figure out how she, and all of us, have gotten here, and how we might turn the dial and alter the course for those of us still to come.” Tonight is the final performance of this Soho run: Desiree’s Coming Early (9:00 pm; $23.75 using code BESTLIFE online, otherwise $39 at the door; Soho Playhouse at 15 Vandam Street; take the C/E subway to Spring Street or 1 subway to Houston Street)

Dave AttellThursday 12/26-Sunday 12/29: Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; Netflix’s Bumping Mics with Jeff Ross & Dave Attell; webseries ComedyUndergroundLive.com; star of Comedy Central’s Comedy Underground, Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn, Comedy Central’s Insomniac, and two Comedy Central specials; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show) headlines through Sunday at Carolines: Dave Attell (8:00 pm Thursday, 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm Friday-Saturday, 8:00 pm Sunday; $43.75 plus 2-drink min.; Carolines Comedy Club at 1626 Broadway, between 49th and 50th Streets)

Gary DeNoia: Friday 12/27: In this one-man show, comic & impressionist Gary DeNoia plays Nicolas Cage, Vin Diesel, and other celebrities teaching children—and you—lessons through books, games, and more (directed by Desmond Thorne): Celebrities Teach Kids Sh*t (9:00 pm, $12, The PIT Underground at 123 East 24th Street)

Sharron Paul, Chanel Ali, and Hari KondaboluFriday 12/27: Hari Kondabolu (above right; fresh, sharp, rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents; fascinating TruTV documentary The Problem with Apu; Netflix special Warn Your Relatives; co-host of Kondabolu Brothers podcast), Chanel Ali (middle; MTV’s Girl Code, Starz, TruTV), and Chris Castelli (host of Shine Box Comedy) perform stand-up hosted by Sharron Paul (left) & Calvin Cole: Cheap Date Comedy Show (10:00 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

That Slapstick ShowSaturday 12/28: A somewhat scholarly look at early filmed comedy shorts and animation which was thought lost until recently discovered in New Zealand, curated & hosted by Nelson Hughes and Tommy Jose Stathes: That Slapstick Show (4:30 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Maryann Aita: Saturday 12/28-Monday 12/30: Maryann Aita describes her one-woman show as follows: “After several disappointing visits with a gynecologist, and many failed efforts to Sex and the City it up with friends, ‘Detective’ Maryann takes it upon herself to figure out what’s going on with her body and how to fix it, relying mostly on whatever she could find on Amazon.com. This is a hilarious (and just a touch sentimental) show about a woman taking charge of her own body that’s perfect for fans of Law & Order, vibrators, and vagina: My Dysfunctional Vagina (7:00 pm, $12, The PIT Loft at 154 West 29th Street; running tonight, Sunday, and Monday at 7:00 pm)

Aminah Imani 2Saturday 12/28: Aminah Imani (co-host of highly popular weekly Brooklyn stand-up showcase Comedy at The Knit; host of podcast Wine Before Nine) performs a deliciously long stand-up set, with openers her Comedy at The Knit co-hosts Sydnee Washington (Conan O’Brien, MTV2’s Vidiots; co-host of podcast The Unofficial Expert) and Marie Faustin (MTV’s Girl Code and Vidiots; co-host of 99.5 FM’s Tall Tales in the Big City; the other co-host of The Unofficial Expert): Aminah Imani with Sydnee & Marie (7:30 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Katie BoyleSaturday 12/28: Seven comics who weren’t born here perform stand-up that might include material about where they came from and the journey that led them to NYC, produced and/or hosted by the charming Katie Boyle (above; from Ireland): Transplants (7:30 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Ben Tomassetti & Kevin C. Hill: Saturday 12/28: Ben Tomassetti & Kevin C. Hill play rock duo Tips Moncrief & Gary Van Patten, a band named Jeez “known for its pedestrian ‘hits’ in the 80’s such as ‘Teen Crocodile,’ ’96 Olympics in Cincinatti,’ and ‘Talk to Me (You Dirty Dirty Dirty Computer).’ The guys are hitting the road again in support of a Greatest Hits album—as bands do. Tonight they discuss their songs Storyteller’s style—or at least that’s what their tour manager told them they were doing. Come see your oddball uncle’s second favorite band:” Jeez! The “Greatest Hits of 1979-1992” Tour (8:00 pm, $12, The PIT Loft at 154 West 29th Street)

North Coast hip-hop improvSaturday 12/28: Every Saturday night, a highly talented freestyle rapping long form improv group takes the stage for an hour: North Coast (9:00 pm, $12, The PIT Underground at 123 East 24th Street)

Repeater's Top 10 Countdown of 2019Sunday 12/29: Evan Forde Barden & Patrick Cartelli, who host music podcast Repeater, recap the year by inviting some of their favorite comics to make their case for the best song of 2019. “After the arguments have been made, Evan and Pat will mercilessly rank their selections.” Purchase tickets in advance online to be entered to win vinyl from Astoria’s HiFi Records & Cafe: Repeater’s Top 10 Countdown of 2019 (7:00 pm, $10, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Naomi Ekperigin & Andy Beckerman: Sunday 12/29: This charming show puts comics who are duos behind the scenes on stage for an evening to adorably perform together,with tonight’s close friends and/or couples TBA hosted by lovers Naomi Ekperigin (dynamite rising star stand-up; Seth Meyers, Comedy Central Half Hour; staff writer for NBC’s Great News; former writer for Comedy Central’s Broad City and Hulu’s Difficult People; MTV, VH1, FX) & Andy Beckerman (The Pete Holmes Show, host of podcast Beginnings): Couples Therapy (7:30 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s The Bell House at 149 7th Street; take R subway to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Avenue)

Sam Taggart, Marcia Belsky, and Drew Anderson: Sunday 12/29: Comics Nick Naney (Stephen Colbert, Comedy Central), Sandy Honig (one-third of sketch group Three Busy Debras; host of Pig and The Bongo Hour), and Annie Donley (Chris Gethard Presents; host of Poppin’ Off) perform for this monthly stand-up showcase named after Stevie Nicks and hosted by Marcia Belsky, Sam Taggart, and Drew Anderson: Stevie (8:00 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Chris GethardTuesday 12/31: Chris Gethard (star of HBO 90-minute special Career Suicide; star of TruTV’s & Fusion’s The Chris Gethard Show; host of Webby-winning podcast Beautiful Stories From Anonymous People; producer of fresh comedy webseries Chris Gethard Presents) and a bunch of his friends TBA perform comedy on New Year’s Eve. Come for just the show, running from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, or buy a “Party Package” that includes drinks, music and dancing post-show to celebrate 2020: Pregame with Gethard and Friends (7:00 pm; $15 for 2-hour show only, $35 for “Party Package” that also includes food/drinks at Parklife and a Littlefield afterparty; Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Hot & Fun New Year's EveTuesday 12/31: Heating up your New Year’s Eve with comedy are Rachel Pegram (Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee, Comedy Central’s Alternatino, MTV, BET; movies Don’t Think Twice and The Week Of; member of National Lampoon Radio Hour and UCB star improv group ASSSSCAT 3000), Jared Goldstein (ABC’s Modern Family, SNL, Starz, TNT), Mary Beth Barone (Viceland; host of podcast Mildly Offensive), and Junior Mint hosted by Jenny Gorelick (host of Jenny’s Birthday Party, co-host of First Impressions) and Zach Teague (TruTV): Hot & Fun New Year’s Eve (7:30 pm, $12, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Creatures of the NightTuesday 12/31: Ring in the New Year’s Eve with a night of drag, burlesque, comedy, singing, dance, and more hosted by Ellipsis Queen: Creatures Of The Night (11:00 pm, $10, The PIT Mainstage (Striker) at 123 East 24th Street)

You can find the vast majority of notable NYC live comedy shows by using the links below to explore the schedules of the following top NYC comedy venues:

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Hell’s Kitchen
555 West 42nd Street; 152-seater; one of the most respected comedy showcases in the world; especially strong on improv, sketch, solo shows, and one-act comedic plays; shows free-$12

Upright Citizens Brigade at SubCulture
45 Bleecker Street; What used to be a top comedy venue called UCB East has sadly gone under, but some of its shows live on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights at respected East Village indie theatre SubCulture at Bleecker & Lafayette Streets, direclty by the #6 subway’s Bleecker Street stop; shows $7-$14

The PIT Striker (Upstairs) Theatre
123 East 24th Street; 88-seater; a top venue that’s a powerful rival of UCB, and often surpasses UCB when blending comedy with music and/or theatricality; shows free-$20

The PIT Underground (Downstairs) Theatre
123 East 24th Street; 40-seater; often more quirky & experimental than upstairs Striker; shows free-$10

The PIT Loft
154 West 29th Street; 50-seater; the third of The PIT theatres, located separately on the West side, hosts a wide range of comedy, but is especially effective as a home for intimate solo and/or theatrical shows; free-$20

The Magnet
254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; strong on improv, musical improv, sketch, and energy; shows $5-$10

The Creek and the Cave
Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all weeknight shows free; weekend shows free-$10

Union Hall
702 Union Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 50-seat theatre; shows $5-$20

Littlefield
635 Sackett Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 100-seat theatre; shows $5-$20

Bell House
149 7th Street in Brooklyn; R to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Ave.; 200-seat theatre; shows $10-$25

QED: A Place to Show & Tell
27-16 23rd Avenue in Astoria Queens; N/W to Ditmars Boulevard; 40-seat theatre; shows free-$10

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.

Village Underground
130 West 3rd Street; Comedy Cellar’s larger sister venue, just around the corner with the same top comics; 2-item min.

Fat Black Pussycat Lounge
130 West 3rd Street; Comedy Cellar’s smaller, intimate, and lower-priced sister venue (next door to Village Underground), which serves as its primary home for solo shows and experimental shows—which means it’s sometimes the most exciting choice; 2-item min.

The Stand
116 East 16th Street; Club closest to competing with Comedy Cellar, featuring top stand-ups on a main stage and upstairs stage; no drink min.—support this policy!

Carolines Comedy Club
1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.

Gotham Comedy Club
208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.

Eastville Comedy Club
487 Atlantic Avenue (near the Barclays Center); only comedy club in Brooklyn; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; some shows have 2-drink min., but many don’t

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.

Comic Strip Live
1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.

Stand Up NY
236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.

NYC Stand-Up Open Mics & Improv Jams

If you want stage time, you can find one or more stand-up open mics virtually any night at Manhattan’s The PIT, Eastville Comedy Club, and Stand Up NY Comedy Club, and at Queens LIC’s The Creek and Astoria Queens’ QED.

In addition, at the East Village’s UCB East you can typically find a stand-up open mic Thursdays at 6:00 pm, an improv jam Wednesdays at 11:15 pm, and a rare bring-your-own-group improv/sketch open stage Sundays at 11:00 pm. And in Chelsea, The Magnet offers an improv jam on Wednesdays at 6:00 pm, and a rare musical improv jam on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm.

All of the venues above typically provide you the stage time either for free or for $5.

There are also numerous other open mics throughout the city. For a more comprehensive list, please visit FreeMicsNYC.

Special Thanks to Mindy and Anya

Special thanks to comedy photographers supreme Anya Garrett and Mindy Tucker for creating so many of the stellar photos that grace this site…and the sites of hundreds of NYC comics.

Contact Hy

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible Best New York Comedy (and HyReviews.com). He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive. It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, provide feedback on my cross-genre short story anthology Ghosts on Drugs, hire me to develop your book or screenplay (please visit BookProposal.net or HyOnYourScript.com), or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.

You can also find me on Twitter at @hybender, Instagram at @hybenderny, and Facebook at https://Facebook.com/hybender.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 10/30/13

October 30, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Monday-Thursday at midnight on TBS: The Pete Holmes Show

Steve Soroka

Before they leave NYC, a Halloween roast of Steve Soroka at The PIT…

Melanie Hamlett

…and a final appearance (for a while) at The Nights of Our Lives by Melanie Hamlett

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Mike Birbiglia’s Dream is both a reference to Mike’s hit play & film Sleepwalk With Me, and to the group of improvisors he’s gathered being a “dream team” for making up scenes springboarding off his stories. Tonight at UCB Chelsea Mike spins tales for SNL’s Mike O’Brien, Chris Gethard, Christina Gausas, Tami Sagher, and/or Aidy Bryant: Mike Birbiglia’s Dream

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Four free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre, followed tonight at 11:00 by a roast of Steve Soroka who’s leaving NYC: Super Free Wednesday

7:00 pm ($5): Comedy duo Paul Logston & Mike Lane (MegaChill) perform sketch comedy “that is as terrifying as it is fun. Expect to see blood, murderers, actual ghosts, funny dancing, and DAEMONS” at The PIT downstairs lounge: MegaHell: A Sketch Comedy Horror Show

7:00 pm to 12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Five and a half hours of improv from eight groups at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Megawatt

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features house groups Apollo and Detroit: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Jim Santangeli and Nate Smith try to determine Who’s More Awesome?

…and in the other half of this double-bill, “Aaron & Brian lead their lonely friend Erik on a surreal, nightmarish odyssey to ‘get his dick wet.’ Elderly lesbians, impromptu Fosse numbers, dueling Katherine Hepburns, and the ominous Old Valley are all pit-stops on this journey to happiness, or at least maybe getting laid,” written by and starring Aaron Jackson, Erik Dies, and Brian Glidewell: Erik Dies, You’re Stupid and We Hate You

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Meggie Spellman (UCBT’s The Prom) and Anne Clark (The PITs Totally, Yes!) perform duo sketch comedy at The PIT downstairs lounge—and tonight give out free candy and more: Black Magic Lab Variety Show

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($7.25 online using discount code SCARY; no min.): Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Aaron Berg, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Mike Lawrence, Big Jay Oakerson, Aaron Berg, and More

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), Justy Dodge (co-host of Married to Comedy podcast and Too Much Information on comicalradio.com; “I was kind of a tomboy growing up. Like, I had Barbies, but only because my Ninja Turtles needed bitches;” for dark bio video, please click here), RG Daniels (blogger for MTV’s Guy Code and TruTV, host of Sunday Night Stand-Up), and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by comic Liz Miele and singer/songwriter Emily Miele: The Miele Sisters Variety Show

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups do sets “and then have a discussion about what’s going on in the world and the mysteries of life” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Chris Laker: The Show

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors—and actual brothers—Will Hines and Kevin Hines perform color commentary on an improv set by other top improvisors at UCB East for this monthly event: The Brothers Hines: Play by Play

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code), Kevin McCaffrey (TruTV’s World’s Dumbest), Kendra Cunningham (Jimmy Fallon), Scott Schendlinger, Pete Kuempel, and Scott Sharp performing at this free weekly comedy show at Lucky Jack’s Bar (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of the finest comedic storytelling shows in the country, in which brilliant writer/performers—who tonight are Melanie Hamlett (in her last appearance on the show before moving for a long while to Taos), Adam Wade, Peter Aguero, Nate Smith, and wonderful host Dave Martin—tell tales that are brutally honest and utterly hilarious, with tonight’s Halloween-themed topic Creepiest Night, at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Nights of Our Lives

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Scary Halloween-themed stories from comics Joe Pera, Aaron Jackson, Eliot Glazer, Abra Tabak, Tim Racine, Rosie Whalen, Alex French, Molly Gaebe, and Julio Julio Julio—told completely in the dark!—at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Jo Firestone: Late Night Scary Stories

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show

[FREE] 10:00: NYC stand-ups performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City as part of the Reddit.com online community, hosted by Adam Lash (HBO, Showtime, The Daily Show) and/or Nathan Anderson (Uncoolio): /r/standup

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Charla Lauriston and guest host Justin Perez wrangle as many as a dozen comics packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun at UCB Chelsea (tonight’s scheduled guests include Nicole Byer and Stratton & Coker; for the full list, please click here): School Night

11:00 pm ($8): Nick Carrillo, Langston Belton, and Devin James Heater perform a post-apocalyptic improvised comedy—exploring the relationship of three men trapped in a Generic Underground Shelter—at The PIT upstairs theatre: G.U.S.

Wednesday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 5:30 pm: A character-based open-mic happening weekly at UCB East hosted by Sean Hart: Don’t Be Yourself: Character Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open-mic for both stand-up and sketch, with sign-up starting at 5:30 and ending at 5:55, at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Brian Frange & Rob Stern: Frange & Stern’s Stand-Up and Sketch Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up for 15 comics performing for 5 minutes each at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.)—with drinks at half price: Happy Hour Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Benel Germosen: Cracking It

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Wednesday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Lizzie Martinez: Comics Phoning It In

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house group Bucky and DJ Cipha Sounds: The Improv Jam

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with group Brick: Magnet Improv Mixer

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 7/7/13

July 7, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For 15th Annual Del Close Marathon highlights, please click here

Myq Kaplan

Myq Kaplan performs at 2:00 in Central Park and at 8:00 at Sunday Night Stand-Up…

Melanie Hamlett

…and world-class storyteller Melanie Hamlett is the monologist at the 7:30 edition ASSSSCAT 3000

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 2:00 pm: Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDs Vegan Mind Meld and Meat Robot), Eddie Brill (former long-time warm-up comic and booker for David Letterman), Calise Hawkins (Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, writer for Playboy.com) Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central), Adam Newman (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor, host of Big Long Sets), and Rodney Laney (HBO, Comedy Central) performing for a free outdoor show at Central Park’s Mineral Springs: Laughter in the Park

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A smorgasbord of of stand-up, comedic music, comedic dance, sketch, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Chris O’Neil: Mishmash Variety Hour (and a Half)

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10; seats are sold out, but there’ll be a standby line if you’re okay with standing) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCB Chelsea’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes superstars in the improv world such as Chris Gethard, and occasionally network TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz—plus tonight’s 7:30 show features world-class storyteller Melanie Hamlett (two-time Moth StorySlam Champion, co-author of the book Leave the Lipstick, Take the Iguana, contributor to Marie Claire Magazine and Nerve.com, amazing blog, roving adventurer): ASSSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): Megan Gray & Louis Kornfeld, who are a formidable improv duo on their own, tonight perform with one of the most respected masters of improv, Magnet theatre co-owner Armando Diaz: Armando Diaz & MegaLou

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDs Vegan Mind Meld and Meat Robot), Kevin McCaffrey (David Letterman, TruTV), Nick Cobb (Comedy Central), Myka Fox, Kelly Fastuca, and Mike Feeney performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5): Victor Varnado (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central, NBC’s My Name is Earl, Adult Swim), Leah Bonnema (VH1, WeTV’s Cinematherapy, Logo, Opie & Anthony’s Virus Channel), Harrison Greenbaum (writer for Mad Magazine; head writer of Tu Nite con Lorenzo Parro on NBCU/Telemundo; winner of the 2010 Andy Kaufman Award), Nore Davis (Comedy Central’s Russell Simmons Presents The Ruckus, MTV), Joe Machi, David Smithyman , and Mike Stanley performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Michael Che (hilarious rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), Mark Normand (hilarious rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; opens for Amy Schumer; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), and Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’S Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): Ted Alexandro, Michael Che, Mark Normand, Gary Gulman, and More

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead) and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

9:00 pm ($7): Damien Lemon (MTV2’s Guy Code, Comedy Central), Simeon Goodson, Mike Stanley, and hopefully more performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show): Comedy Night

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Jason Saenz (sketch troupe Onassis, co-host of Late Night Trash), Mike Stanley, Jessica Watkins, Raj Sivaraman, and Jason Burke performing stand-up in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead), Michael Che (hilarious rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), and Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’S Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): Todd Barry, Michael Che, Ryan Hamilton, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show providing at least 3 minutes per comic (more time if there are fewer comics attending), with sign-up at 3:45, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Showcase

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

[ALMOST FREE] 9:30 pm ($1): Open-mic comedy, with 4 minutes per performer, at The PIT downstairs lounge: Child Support

[FREE] 10:00 pm: The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 2/18/13

February 18, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Melanie Hamlett

A traveled host, plus Dave Hill and John Flynn, share their brave tales at the debut at Adventures with Melanie Hamlett…

Sit, Stay, and Stand-Up

…Ted Alexandro, Colin Quinn, Judah Friedlander, Rich Vos, Hannibal Buress, Carmen Lynch, Bonnie McFarlane, and more do a benefit for NYC pets at The Stand…

Janeane Garofalo

…Janeane Garofalo (a huge pet fan herself) and more at Morrison Motel…

Brent Weinbach

…and Brent Weinbach performs a 45-minute set at both 8:00 and 10:00 for Brooklyn’s Sack Magic

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

 [TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Cammi Climaco (co-host of Ask Me Stories) hosts this weekly hour-long open-mic storytelling show, with typically six audience members chosen from a bucket of names getting to tell tales for 6-7 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge: Cammi Climaco’s Storytelling Open Mic

6:00 pm ($5 cover for comics, no cover for audience with code HyReviews, plus 1-drink min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 1/2 minutes per set and 20 comics crammed into 2 hours—at the Greenwich Village Comedy Club (99 MacDougal Street) for John Morrison’s Village Motel

6:00 pm & 8:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, with each show running 1 hour and 45 minutes. Arrive 30 minutes before the show you want to be in to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Abigoliah Schamaun & Peggy O’Leary: Dicks Open Mic

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($8.71 online, or $7 at the door if it doesn’t sell out in advance…but it probably will): Melanie Hamlett is a Moth Grandslam Champion, co-author of the book Leave the Lipstick, Take the Iguana, and a contributor to Marie Claire Magazine and Nerve.com. She’s also a roving adventurer who tours the globe to find memorable tales. Tonight Melanie debuts her monthly storytelling show at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue) with fellow brave souls Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, The Dave Hill Explosion, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper, author of Tasteful Nudes), John Flynn (rising star storyteller/actor; Saturday Night Live, The Nights of Our Lives, host of storytelling show Oh, Hey Guys!), and Daisy Rosario (NPR, Moth GrandSlam Champion). I’ll be attending this; come join me for travel slides, a campfire vibe, and amazing stories: Adventures with Melanie Hamlett

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Wonderful improvisors—and real life wife & husband—Mary Theresa Archbold and Pat Shay work up a sweat to make you laugh, along with improv troupe Glitter Face, at The PIT downstairs lounge: CardioProv

7:00 pm ($7): Sketch troupe Shelby Company performs oddball bits for this Magnet sketch show show that in the past has included two-timing monsters and presidential ninjas: Ephemerama

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[FREE] 7:30ish pm ($5): Brooke Van Poppelen (MTV’s Girl Code; trutV, TLC, co-host of Dive Comedy; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here), Aparna Nancherla (delightfully wry stand-up; writer for FX’s Totally Biased), Harrison Greenbaum (writer for Mad Magazine; head writer of Tu Nite con Lorenzo Parro on NBCU/Telemundo; winner of the 2010 Andy Kaufman Award), and Max Silvestri (VH1, The Onion, co-host of Big Terrific) performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Pete’s Candy Store (709 Lorimer Street) hosted by Sabrina Jalees (Last Comic Standing, MTV): Jennifer Laugh Hewitt

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Long sets from two of the finest rising star stand-ups in NYC—each of whom is practicing for a Comedy Central half-hour special to be taped in two weeks—Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this comic red-hot; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up) and Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing; podcast You Had to Be There) performing at UCB East hosted by Pete Davidson: Comedy Central Corporate Retreat

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm & 10:00 pm ($5): Brent Weinbach (Conan O’Brien, Comedians of Comedy; 2007 Andy Kaufman Award winner; co-host of The Legacy Music Hour podcast) performs a 45-minute set for two consecutive shows (with openers by show hosts Louis Katz & Grant Gordon, plus “a special guest”) at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar: Sack Magic: Brent Weinbach Headlines

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1, host of award-winning storytelling show Risk!), Damian Bellino (host of My High School Boyfriend Was Gay), Shannon Cason (Do Not Submit), Justin Morgan (stand-up), and musical guest Robin Gelfenbien (host of Yum’s The Word) sharing their tales of passion at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jefferson: Bare: True Stories of Sex, Desire, and Romance

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman, host of Entertaining the Bartender), Desiree Burch (Edinburgh Fringe Festival), Matt Koff (Onion News Network, WitStream), and Josh Gondelman performing stand-up, plus an interview with QuestLove of The Roots, at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim): Night Train

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($30): A star-packed evening of stand-ups Ted Alexandro, Colin Quinn, Judah Friedlander, Rich Vos, Hannibal Buress, Carmen Lynch, Bonnie McFarlane, and more raising funds for NYC animals at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Sit, Stay, and Stand Up Benefit

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00ish pm: Mike Drucker (hilarious stand-up; staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; freelance writer for SNL, The Onion, McSweeney’s), Joyelle Johnson (opens for Chappelle and Maria Bamford), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Ashley Brooke Roberts (co-host of The Dream Show), Andrew Short, and Nate Fridson performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Grand Victory Bar (245 Grand Street) for this twice-a-month extravaganza hosted by Nick Maritato and the razor-sharp & delightful Erin Lennox, who proclaims “This week we have a Grammy!!!! (an old woman we found on the bus and now can’t get rid of):” DTF

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Marina Franklin (developing into one of the finest stand-ups in the country, with an uncommonly gentle, graceful style that’s pure joy; Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, Craig Ferguson, VH1, Comedy Central’s Premium Blend), Tom Papa (host of Jerry Seinfeld-produced NBC comedy The Marriage Ref; numerous appearances on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno; three Comedy Central specials), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle Show, For the Love of the Game), and Jermaine Fowler (FOX’s new In Living Color, MTV, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Marina Franklin, Tom Papa, Gary Gulman, Keith Alberstadt, and More

8:00 pm ($5): UCBT star & Chris Gethard Show icon Riley Soloner is a sweet and silly comic almost impossible to not like. His character Vacation Jason is over-the-top ridiculous, which means Riley has to walk a tightrope between getting laughs and creating a reality believable enough to make us care about what’s going on. This first attempt at a sketch show falters on the latter; and I’d encourage Riley to be bolder about doing sharp, smart comedy, even with dumb characters, as he moves forward with his young and promising career. But script aside, there are worse ways to spend 30 minutes then watch Riley on stage while you’re wearing a show-supplied Hawaiian lei of flowers around your neck: Vacation Jason’s Island Flavors

…and in the other half of this UCB Chelsea double-bill, young talents—gay and otherwise—put on a meta-musical spoofing Broadway musicals of the future that’s hit-or-miss, but fun overall:The 2017 Tony Awardz: A Parody of Musical Proportions

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:30 pm ($15 if you mention HyReviews.com [otherwise $20], which includes one drink; calling 212.989.9319 to reserve seats is recommended): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up), Emily Heller (Comedy Central, FX’s Totally Biased; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Hari Kondabolu (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Presents, , FX’s Totally Biased), and Tom Ryan (David Letterman, Bill Maher, Showtime) performing stand-up at the Cornelia Street Cafe for John Morrison’s Morrison Motel

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Racing over from UCBT East’s 8:00 pm show, rising stars Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this comic red-hot; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up) and Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing; podcast You Had to Be There), plus Shakir Standley, Jordan Ferber, and Neruda Care Bear Williams performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Bar Matchless back room (557 Manhattan Avenue, near the G subway’s Nassau Avenue stop) hosted by Nimesh Patel, Mike Denny, and/or Michael Che: Broken Comedy

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:30 pm: In celebration of post-Valentine’s Day, one of the best-known romantic comedies of the past two decades skewered by stand-ups Michelle Wolf, Jared Fried, and more at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge with host Robbie Collier: Hey We Live There!: You’ve Got Mail

9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out new material: Supereasy (which includes comedy chameleon Livia Scott) and Onassis (which includes such talents as Lauren Adams and Frank Hejl): Maude Night: Supereasy and Onassis

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

[FREE] 9:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Hilary Schwartz, Joe Rocha, J.F. Harris, Angry Bob, Alex Fosella, and Jason Kantner performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue) with host Pat O’Shea: Ed Sullivan on Acid

9:30 pm ($5): The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues, Sharon Spell, Anna Callegari, and Sue Smith: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; star of Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn and Comedy Central’s Insomniac; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Dan Soder (Comedy Central, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Andrew Schulz (MTV2’s Guy Code), and Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Dave Attell, Nick Griffin, Joe List, Dan Soder, and More

10:00 pm ($8): A group of actors and improvisors attempt to duplicate the success of UCBT’s Gravid Water by putting improvisors in the middle of classic theatre scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre. UCBT uses top Broadway and improv talent for its show, making it extraordinary. The participants of this show are unannounced; but the format is so strong that this might work anyway, despite the awful title: The Actor’s Worst Nightmare

10:00 pm ($5): Improv is dominated by guys, so this is a rare treat—a dozen female improvisors “for an evening of comedy that will delight men, women, babies, and kittens” at The Magnet hosted by Megan Gray: We Might Just Kiss

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Langston Belton: Base Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by someone wonderful: Whiplash

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jared Reed: Fresh

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 11/29/12

November 29, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Kate McKinnon and Melanie Hamlett

It’s a night for hilarious tales, with comedy geniuses Kate McKinnon (above) and Chris Gethard at Don’t Tell My Mother; traveling adventurer Melanie Hamlett (and yes, that’s a real photo) at both Sideshow Goshko and Risk!…

Leslie Goshko and Lillian DeVane.jpg

…superb storyteller Leslie Goshko hosting her monthly extravaganza Sideshow Goshko; Boston-based Lillian DeVane visiting NYC to perform at Kevin Allison’s Risk!…

Tom Shillue and Jim O'Grady

…and ace storytellers Tom Shillue and Jim O’Grady performing at Tom Shillue’s Funny Story

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:00 pm: Carter Edwards (UCB talent booker) is tonight’s guest at this weekly open-mic storytelling show, with each performer given a whopping eight minutes to captivate & impress, at UCB East hosted by John Flynn: Oh, Hey Guys!

6:00 pm ($1): PIT musical improv troupe Adorable mixes with musical improv novices on-stage at the downstairs lounge for Pitch

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics’ names drawn from a bucket and each chosen receiving two minutes—and if that goes well, maybe a hug (but not actual puppies)—at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ross Parsons & Trey Galyon: Free Puppies

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post) hosts this monthly storytelling show at the KGB Bar (85 East 4th Street, off Second Avenue), with tonight’s guests Melanie Hamlett (brilliant storyteller/writer; Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog, roving adventurer), Andrew Linderman (host of Local Stories), Ted McAdams, and Michele Carlo, plus accordion playing by Dr. Michelle-Leona Godin: Sideshow Goshko

7:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT downstairs lounge: Punchbowl and THEM

[FREE] 7:00 pm: In this free Magnet show, audience members (signing in at 6:00) can join in with improv troupe Junior Varsity to make up scenes on the spot: Magnet Mixer

7:30 pm ($5): Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Ilana Glazer (Broad City), and Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, VH1) performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Halle Kiefer: Splitsider and Tumblr’s Dog and Pony Show

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Saturday Night Live write Mike O’Brien “performs solo sketch and stand-up, reads a short story, and in general, does things. Come out to see experimental comedy as well as comedy that involves no experimentation” at UCB Chelsea: Mike O’Brien: 45 Minutes of Things

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($20): A former roommate & drinking buddy of such comedy giants as David Cross and Marc Maron performs a one-man show that was such a hit at August’s FringeNYC it’s been extended indefinitely. Please read my review by clicking here, and Jason Zinoman’s New York Times review by clicking here; and then come share an intimate hour with Matt Graham at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club so he can explain life and meaning and why This Too Shall Suck

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door or ($6.17 online): James Adomian (hilarious, super-charged character comic/impressionist; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Harold and Kumar 2), Annie Lederman (Chelsea Lately), Liam McEneaney, and more perform stand-up along with sideshow attractions including the wonderful Cherry Pitz (burlesque), Vincent Price Lady Aye (sword swallowing), Miss Vivien (piercing burlesque), and The Goon (human blockhead) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City for this unusual carny experience: Abigoliah’s Bizzarre Bazaar

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($65 retail or $40 here): This isn’t pure comedy, but an enchanting hodgepodge of original tall tales fueled by laughs. The 2-hour play from the wonderful guys of PigPen blends shadow puppetry, songs, inventive staging, and more to create living dreams. For my review of PigPen’s two previous shows at FringeNYC, please click here and here. This newest work is their most ambitious, and that sometimes results in the story feeling too slow or padded; but it also yields a deeper emotional payoff. And even though not all the bits hit the mark, so many of them do that you’re likely to feel satisfied—and missing PigPen’s world after the show is over. The production is at The Gym at Judson (243 Thompson Street) in the West Village: The Old Man and the Moon

8:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT downstairs lounge: Team Black and Dagger

[$] 8:00 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.) A TV star who was a cast member of MTV’s Punk’d and is now a cast member of FX’s The League headlining through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Stephen Rannazzisi

8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house troupes Junior Varsity, Hello Laser, Horses, and The Boss performing improv for two hours, followed at 10:00 pm by Medusa (all improvisers stay on stage at all times, and alternate between speaking roles and playing inanimate objects), and then at 11:00 improv troupe competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) featuring Featherweight vs. Weekend of Regret: The Magnet’s Night Out

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm doors, 8:30 pm show ($10, which includes a free beer): Star storyteller Tom Shillue (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents, 2011 ECNY Award for Best Storyteller) gathers top comics to tell funny stories at the Brooklyn Brewery (79 North 11th Street), with tonight’s guests Eric Slovin (writer for Saturday Night Live 2002-2005 and Important Things with Demetri Martin; Comedy Central Presents), Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Carolyn Castiglia (Last Comic Standing, VH1; for sample of Carolyn as white rapper, please click here), and Joanne Solomon (upcoming essay collection Walking Mr. Lieberman): Tom Shillue’s Funny Story

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($30 & 2-drink min.): A TV & movie star who created & hosted Last Comic Standing, was a cast member of CBS’ Gary Unmarried and Ghost Whisperer, has done extensive sports broadcasting for ESPN, and has appeared in such feature films as Jerry MacGuire, Pay It Forward, and Hereafter (opposite Matt Damon) headlining through Saturday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Jay Mohr

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): A killer lineup of genius comics telling confessional stories:Kate McKinnon (genius sketch comic and stellar cast member of Saturday Night Live; voice actress for Adult Swim’s Venture Brothers and Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans), Chris Gethard (brilliant improvisor and comedic storyteller; star of Comedy Central sitcom Big Lake and Manhattan Cable Access’ The Chris Gethard Show; The Stepfathers, The Nights of Our Lives, author of new bestseller A Bad Idea I’m About to Do and Weird New York), Lizz Winstead (co-creator of The Daily Show, former host on Air America), and Jen Kober (co-star of HBO’s Treme, punched out Larry David on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, Showtime) sharing embarrassing moments at 92Y Tribeca (200 Hudson Street): Don’t Tell My Mother

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Mike Yard (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00ish pm: Terrific NYC stand-ups (the lineup is typically announced around 3:00 pm; for an update, please click here) performing on this free weekly show at the Kabin Bar and Lounge hosted by Chesley Calloway and/or comedy genius Sean Patton: Comedy as a Second Language

9:00 pm ($5): Erin Judge (Comedy Central; comedy album So Many Choices; for hilarious short bit on men vs. women, please click here), Adam Lowitt (Executive Producer of The Daily Show), Neal Stastny, Anthony Devito, Anton Shuford, and David Smithyman performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover and/or Emily Heller: Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Tig Notaro (hilarious stand-up; Comedy Central Presents, The Sarah Silverman Program, staff writer for the upcoming Amy Schumer show on Comedy Central; for Louis CK on Tig, and to buy an extraordinary set she performed, please click here and here) makes a rare NYC appearance with her friend Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper; book Tasteful Nudes) at The Dave Hill Explosion

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Melanie Hamlett (brilliant storyteller/writer; Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog, roving adventurer), Lillian DeVane (Boston-based stand-up), Julia Wiedeman (one-woman show Naked People), and Candice Guardin performing at The PIT upstairs theatre to share tales on tonight’s theme Thanks at one of the finest storytelling shows in the country along with host Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1): Risk!

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge, produced by Dan Hodapp & Micah Sherman: The Scene

[TOP PICK] 9:45 doors, 10:15 pm show ($9; show up 30-60 minutes early to buy snacks/drinks): Mystery Science Theater 3000 goes street in this delightful series by Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show) and Donwill (hip-hop group Tanya Morgan) in which the boys watch a ridiculous movie and yell comments at it throughout. It all happens at Brooklyn’s reRun (147 Front Street, between Pearl & Jay Streets), with tonight’s film a happy surprise: Shouting at the Screen

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Politically incorrect stand-ups compete in this unique show for which each comic performs a set and then has to provide biting commentary on a popular online video. The audience then votes on who was the most savagely funny and has won the right to return the following month. It all happens at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Mike Feeney: On the Offensive

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): UCBT improv troupes Airwolf and Graceland compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): Nick Turner and Team Submarine each perform 30-minute stand-up sets at UCB East hosted by Adam Newman: Big Long Sets

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 11/19/12

November 19, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

My favorite fast food place, Tuck Shop, got hit hard by Sandy. Please check out its amazing meat & veggie mini-pies; the 68 East 1st Street store is near UCB East and open very late…and is run by a fiery Aussie redhead who’s a delight.

Todd Barry

World-class stand-up Todd Barry, Cory Kahaney, and more perform at John Morrison’s Morrison Motel…

Melanie Hamlett

…and international adventurer Melanie Hamlett hosts vibrant storytellers, including Adam Wade, at Told

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] 6:00 pm ($1): Cammi Climaco (co-host of Ask Me Stories) hosts this weekly hour-long open-mic storytelling show, with audience members chosen from a bucket of names getting to tell tales for 6 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge: Cammi Climaco’s Storytelling Open Mic

6:00 pm ($5 cover for comics, no cover for audience with code HyReviews, plus 1-drink min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 1/2 minutes per set and 20 comics crammed into 2 hours—at the Greenwich Village Comedy Club (99 MacDougal Street) for John Morrison’s Village Motel

6:00 pm & 8:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, with each show running 1 hour and 45 minutes. Arrive 30 minutes before the show you want to be in to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($26 via the box office or $30 online): UK TV star Simon Amstell (BBC’s Do Nothing, Grandma’s House) performs a brilliant one-man show about the anxieties of success and the meaning of life—and yes, he will tell you the meaning of life before the evening ends (worth the price of admission right there…). While the show is tightly scripted, Simon is one of the most lightning-quick wits in comedy, and at the performance I attended reminded me of Daniel Kitson by crafting many of the best moments on the fly from responses to the audience. (For example, when a woman in the first row abruptly got up to leave Simon did several minutes on that; and when she returned from the bathroom and explained she hadn’t missed anything because she’d seen Numb before, Simon replied, “I don’t know whether that makes it better or worse. Does that mean you waited until the part of the show you liked the least?”) Take advantage of this too-brief run in NYC (through November 21st) and nab tickets at the lovely Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, between First and Second Avenues)—especially for tonight, which features a Q&A session with Simon afterwards: Simon Amstell: Numb—With Q&A Post-Show

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($12 at the door or $11.30 online): Brilliant storyteller & roving adventurer Melanie Hamlett (Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog) guest-hosts this month’s edition raising funds for Sandy relief, performing with fellow yarn-spinners Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 18-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas The Adam Wade Show, Tales of the Cosmos, and Whatever Happened to the Nerds?; for a sampling of Adam’s award-winning tales, please click here), Ed Gavagan (for a story about being selected as a murder victim for a gang initiation, please click here), Michael Che (IFC’s Bunk, Comedy Central), Slash Coleman, and Zero Boy telling tales revolving around the “Come Hell or High Water” at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place) produced by Seth Lind (NPR’s This American Life): Told: Come Hell or High Water

7:00 pm ($5): Becky Yamamoto (rave reviews from The New York Times and The New Yorker; former beard-wearing member of band Stickerbook), and Tanisha Long perform a two-gal sketch show at The PIT downstairs lounge directed by Katie Hartman (Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting): You’ve Ruined My LIfe

7:00 pm ($5): At The Magnet, a one-woman show in which “Trudy Carmichael takes you on a journey through the trials and triumphs of her less than illustrious career and more than lackluster love life. Through a collection of song parodies, mash-ups, originals (and an improvised encore for good measure), Trudy strikes many a bittersweet note in this soulful and soul-searching solo cabaret” titled Trudy Carmichael: My Life on the V List

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm ($28 with discount code BBOX [otherwise $40]): The return of one of the funniest comedies—and finest comedic ensembles—to grace New York, and what ended up as the very best show of this year’s FringeNYC Festival, playing at the Soho Playhouse’s upstairs theatre. Please read my review by clicking here, and then take advantage of this opportunity to see the Chicago-based 5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Scott Adsit (cast member of 30 Rock, and cowriter-director-producer-costar of Adult Swim’s awesome & Emmy-winning Moral Orel) teaming up with fellow 30 Rock actor John Lutz (who previously spent six years as a staff writer for Saturday Night Live) to form a super-smart and hilarious star improv duo that’s become one of the very best attractions at UCB Chelsea and should not be missed: John & Scott

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of hit podcast You Had to Be There), Barry Rothbart (Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC’s Do Whatever), Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV’s Pranked), Dan Gurewitch (College Humor), and Josh Ruben performing stand-up at UCB East: Comedy Central Corporate Retreat

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00ish pm: Jermaine Fowler (FOX’s new In Living Color, MTV, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; sketch troupe The Prom, co-host of The Dream Show), Brent Sullivan (Comedy Central; for video about crying while reading The Giving Tree, please click here), Chris Distefano (Comedy Central, MTV), Anthony Devito (MTV), and Peggy O’Leary (sketch troupe Bleak Comedy) performing stand-up or sketch at Brooklyn’s Grand Victory Bar (245 Grand Street) for this twice-a-month extravaganza hosted by the razor-sharp & delightful Erin Lennox (co-host of The Orphanage; for a sample of Erin’s dynamite Seriously Sports show, please click here) and Nick Maritato: DTF

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Storytellers David Crabb (co-host of Ask Me Stories), Kelli Dunham (Queer Memoir), William Mullin (Closet Cases), Michele Carlo (author of Fish Out of Aqua), and Graham Nolan, plus musical guest Rob Paravonian (Comedy Central, VH1; to watch his hit video Pachelbel Rant, which has been viewed by over 9 million people on YouTube, please click here), at The PIT upstairs theatre: Bare! True Stories of Sex, Desire and Romance

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:30 pm ($15 if you mention HyReviews.com [otherwise $20], which includes one drink; calling 212.989.9319 to reserve seats is recommended): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead), Cory Kahaney (David Letterman, Bill Maher, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Presents, The View), Hari Kondabolu (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Presents, , FX’s Totally Biased), Tom Ryan (David Letterman, Bill Maher, Comedy Central, Showtime), and Tony Kelly (BBC America’s Primeval, Total Recall, PS I Hate You) performing stand-up at the Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street, between Bleecker & West 4th Streets and Sixth & Seventh Avenues) for John Morrison’s Morrison Motel

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): At The Magnet, “strange, mysterious, beautiful, and disgusting, this show will dazzle you with sketch comedy… and magic!” from witchy duo Angela DeManti & Emily Shapiro—plus, tonight only, guest improv troupe Eaglefox: The Weird Sisters

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Al Jackson, Brian Cichocki, Mike Brown, and more performing at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s Bar Matchless back room (557 Manhattan Avenue, near the G subway’s Nassau Avenue stop) hosted by Nimesh Patel, Mike Denny, and/or Michael Che: Broken Comedy

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out new bits: Fambly (which includes wonderful rising stars Mamrie Hart, Bridey Elliott, Nicole Byer, Dan Chamberlain, Veronica Osorio, and a sharp crew of writers), and Beige (which includes Dan Hodapp, who hosts weekly improv show The Scene and recently co-starred in FringeNYC smash hit Tail! Spin!): Maude Night: Fambly and Beige

[FREE] 9:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Harrison Greenbaum (writer for Mad Magazine; head writer of Tu Nite con Lorenzo Parro on NBCU/Telemundo; winner of the 2010 Andy Kaufman Award), Joe Pontillo. Carolina Hidalgo, Jordon Ferber, Nikki Lynn, Jason Saenz, Koshin Egal, Neil Charles and Courtney Hill performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue) with host Pat O’Shea: Ed Sullivan on Acid

9:30 pm ($5): An open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($7): A rotating cast of veteran improvisors make up scenes based on the improvised monologues of the co-owner of The Magnet theatre: The Armando Diaz Experience

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Langston Belton: Base Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea guest-hosted by someone wonderful (while Leo Allen is in LA): Whiplash

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jared Reed: Fresh

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 8/20/12

August 20, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For FringeNYC 2012 shows rated & reviewed, please click here.

Joe Pera

Hilarious deadpan stand-up Joe Pera performs at Comedy Central Corporate Retreat…

Melanie Hamlett

…and comedic adventurer Melanie Hamlett shares stories of being on the road at Told

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Weekly hour-long open-mic storytelling show, with audience members chosen from a bucket of names getting to tell tales for 8 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge along with host Jake Hart: The Dump

6:00 pm ($5 cover & $5 drink min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 1/2 minutes per set and 20 comics crammed into 2 hours—at the Greenwich Village Comedy Club (99 MacDougal Street) for John Morrison’s Village Motel

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($12 at the door or $11.30 online): Storytellers Melanie Hamlett (brilliant storyteller/writer; Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog, roving adventurer), PJ Vogt, Justine Barron, Greg Walloch, and David Crabb telling tales about this month’s topic “I Know What I DId Last Summer” at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place) with host Seth Lind (NPR’s This American Life): Told: I Know What I Did Last Summer

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Joe Pera (very funny deadpan comic; I recently saw him sing beautifully and then smash three dozen plates to pieces; for reasons to hire Joe, please click here), Phoebe Robinson (TV Guide’s 100 TV Shows To See Before You Die and 25 Biggest Reality Star Blunders), Will Hines (ace improv troupe The Stepfathers), Scott Moran (Rubber Bullets), Ben Kissel, and Gonzalo Cordova performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Michael Che: Comedy Central Corporate Retreat

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sketch troupes Reformed Whores, Chess Club, and Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp each performing one of their most popular sketches and one of their personal favorites at UCB Chelsea hosted by Aaron Kheifets: A-Side/B-Side

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Justy Dodge (co-host of Too Much Information on comicalradio.com; “I was kind of a tomboy growing up. Like, I had Barbies, but only because my Ninja Turtles needed bitches;” for dark bio video, please click here), Joe List (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), and more performing stand-up at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s Bar Matchless back room (557 Manhattan Avenue, near the G subway’s Nassau Avenue stop) hosted by Nimesh Patel, Mike Denny, and/or Michael Che: Broken Comedy

8:00 pm ($8): Improv performed by talented duos at The PIT upstairs theatre: Ampers&nd

[DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($11.34 [vs. $21.69] online using discount code LLED10): NYC stand-ups specializing in political humor make fun of our current election cycle at The Playroom Theater (151 West 46th Street); take advantage of discount code LLED10 to see this off-Broadway show for under $12: Laughing Liberally: Electile Dysfunction

8:30 pm ($10): An NYC improv troupe, headed by Duncan Murdoch, making up scenes following not only an audience suggestion but the riffs of an instrumental jazz quartet: FACE

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, a delightful dark musical about the rich consuming the poor—literally. Witty songs from Brian Glidewell, Marcy Jarreau, and Kevin Carter, a uniformly strong cast (Megan Maes, Aaron Jackson, Michael Martin, Katie Schorr, Dan Hodapp, Brian Glidewell, and Stephanie Streisand), and sharp direction from Christopher Gladysz and Lauren Conlin Adams make this 30-minute surreal parody of Newsies a winner as a UCBT comedy, and recommended. That said, right now the story is paper-thin and the characters cardboard. While the latter is turned into an asset (e.g., a leg-injured character is hilariously named “Cripply”), I’m hoping the creators consider making all the elements deeper and more nuanced, and expanding the production to a 90-minute legit theatre length. Meanwhile, enjoy this remarkably compact version that delivers a quick, sharp punch to the gut you’re likely to remember: Newsadoozies: A Man-Eating Musical

…and in the other half of this double-bill, a show for which I had high hopes since some of my fondest childhood memories are of Krypto and his Space Canine Patrol Agents (S.C.P.A.). But this ain’t that. Instead, it’s a deliberately dumb version of Saturday morning cartoon shows that demonstrates little respect, affection, or wit towards its source material. The most notable elements are Neil Casey, who is hilarious as an evil alien insect-man; Rob Lathan as Neil’s lackey; and Sue Galloway as the gal even dog creatures want to make out with. This could have been so much more, especially with the brilliant Craig Rowin as co-writer; but instead it’s Dog Fleet

9:30 pm ($5): The debut of the only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

10:00 pm ($5): A variety show in which comics perform characters, stand-up, and other bits at The Magnet hosted by Jon Bander: What’s to Get?

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Karaoke plus Mad Libs—in which the audience chooses a list of words to swap into a popular song—at the UCB East Bar hosted by karaoke experts Alan Starzinski and Amy Jo Jackson, plus live keyboard accompaniment by Joe McGinty: Karaoke Night at the Hot Chicks Room

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Keith Huang: Base Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by someone wonderful (while Leo Allen is in LA): Whiplash

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jared Reed: Fresh

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 8/5/12

August 5, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
For best video previews of FringeNYC 2012 shows, please click here.

Melanie Hamlett

Ace storyteller Melanie Hamlett returns from her South American adventures to be the monologist tonight at both editions of UCB Chelsea’s ASSSCAT 3000

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Showcase

[FREE] 6:00 pm: “Improvising from life to life, putting things right that once went wrong, kicking ass, and hoping each time that the next kick ass jump will be the kick ass jump home” from troupe IRTE at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: IRTE: That Kick Ass Time Jump Show

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCB Chelsea’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes stars in the improv world, and sometimes even TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz—and tonight features stellar storyteller Melanie Hamlett as the monologist who tells tales serving as the springboard for improv scenes: ASSSCAT 3000

7:30 pm ($5): Improv troupes not affiliated with any comedy school compete at UCB East for audience laughs and votes—and the privilege to go on to perform at the primary Cage Match show at UCB Chelsea—in this show hosted by the delightful Amey Goerlich & Ryan Karels (Krompf): Indie Cage Match

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Sketch, improv, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City from comedy troupe Froduce

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.) Judah Friedlander is a hilarious stand-up and occasional agent of chaos. Judah is a cast member of 30 Rock, and has also performed on VH1’s Best Week Ever, HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, MTV’s Wonder Showzen, and Jay Leno. In addition, Judah has acted in over 20 films, including such hit comedies as Meet the Parents, Zoolander,  and Full Grown Men. Judah was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for his role in American Splendor. When asked in an interview about his influences, Judah responded: “Audiences. They are often the forgotten ingredient in stand-up comedy. Stand-up is live entertainment, and a live audience is needed. Also, whatever is happening at the moment. I play off of that. The moment is a big influence. If you’re not playing the moment you’re not doing stand-up comedy–someone just reciting material but not responding with what’s going on in the room is not stand-up comedy.” This playful, anarchic, in-the-moment comedy veteran—and author of the book How to Beat Up Anybody—is headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Judah Friedlander

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead) and adorable band Supercute! (Rachel Trachtenberg and her young gal pals)  performing at The PIT upstairs theatre with host Casey Jost (writer for Jimmy Fallon): Fooling Around with Casey Jost

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Jane Borden (former Comedy Editor of Time Out New York, author of I Totally Meant to Do That), Jessimae Peluso (Last Comic Standing, Chelsea Lately, TruTV, Tyra Banks), Greg Warren, Paul Hooper, and Chris Burns performing at RG Daniels’ free weekly show at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street): Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5): Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), John Early, David Bernstein, and Mallory Schlossberg performing stand-up, storytelling, and more at The Magnet hosted by Willy Appelman: The Willy Appelman Variety Show

9:00 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Typically stellar stand-ups performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress or (if he’s out of town) a guest host: Comedy Night

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Lucas Brothers (Jimmy Fallon), , Ashley Brooke Roberts, Doug Smith, Shalewa Sharpe, and Nick Maritato performing stand-up in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at the Beauty Bar

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Sharp Chicago-trained improvisors led by Susan Messing make up scenes at The PIT, with tonight’s guests including Christina Gausas (Conan O’Brien, 30 Rock, Louie): Messing with New York

9:30 pm ($5): Magnet sketch comics performing their best material: Sketch Sundays

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with four minutes per comic, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Molly Austin & Mike Brown: Vicious Cycle

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Jessimae Peluso (Last Comic Standing, Chelsea Lately, TruTV, Tyra Banks), Leah Bonnema, and Raquel D’Aspice performing stand-up at this free weekly gay-themed show at Therapy hosted by Brad Loekle: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

10:00 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with improvisors taken from the audience…and who may include you: Improv Nerds Jam

 For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 12/4/10

December 4, 2010

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

Judah Friedlander and Jim Gaffigan

Tonight Judah Friedlander headlines at Comix, Jim Gaffigan headlines at the Best Buy Theater...

Tracy Morgan and Melanie Hamlett

...Tracy Morgan headlines at Carolines, and Melanie Hamlett bids adieu to NYC at The Going Away Show

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm ($15, which includes 1 drink): Four funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but one of them is a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who does gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s yarn-spinners are Ophira Eisenberg (brilliant storyteller and host of The Liar Show TV pilot; Comedy Central, VH1, Showtime), Jim O’Grady (NPR’s This American Life), Peter Lubell (IFC writer/producer), and Martin Dockery (Best of Fest winner at Winnipeg Fringe Festival). Come let host Andy Christie (The New York Times, Moth GrandSlam Champion) attempt to mislead you at The Liar Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($40-$50): A comedy superstar who delights in observational humor about food (his Hot Pockets routine is a classic) and mundane things we take for granted (“I like escalators because they can never break, only become stairs”). As accessible as any mainstream performer alive, while simultaneously a sharp deconstructionist who can work any alternative comedy room with ease, his appeal is deep and universal. He’s appeared over a dozen times on David Letterman, over two dozen times on Conan O’Brien (for which he created the animated series Pale Force), performed his own Comedy Central Presents special, and created aBeyond the Pale comedy album that’s been certified Platinum (the CD and DVD versions have each sold over 150,000 copies). And he’s headlining one more night at the Best Buy Theater (1515 Broadway at 44th Street): Jim Gaffigan

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Genius improvisors Anthony King, Christina Gausas, Becky Drysdale, and more—including writers & performers from 30 Rock, The Colbert Report, andThe Daily Show—plus a rotating cast of stellar visitors, all joyously declaring Let’s Have a Ball

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($60 & 2-drink min.): A co-star of 30 Rock who’s one of the most hilarious guys in the biz headlining tonight through Sunday at Carolines: Tracy Morgan

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($31.22 online if you use code PLAYBILL, plus 2-item minimum): A cast member of 30 Rock, and a performer on VH1’s Best Week Ever, HBO’sCurb Your Enthusiasm, MTV’s Wonder Showzen, NBC’s The Tonight Show, and over 20 films headlining for one night only at the elegant Comix Comedy Club: Judah Friedlander

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: One of the finest storytellers in the country, the unique, brilliant, and hilarious Melanie Hamlett (Moth GrandSlam Champion), is heading off to the New Mexico desert for several months to focus on her first book. But before she goes, she’s having a blowout show, party, and auction for comedy services. Don’t miss Kevin Allison (sketch comic of legendary The State, host of Risk!), John Flynn (The Nights of Our LIves), Daisy Rosario (NPR), Shannon O’Neill (The Stepfathers), and more performing at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City for Melanie Hamlett’s Going-Away Party and Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Brilliantly funny writer/singer Jessica Delfino (enjoys singing songs about her vagina, as demonstrated by her CD Dirty Folk Rock; created the hilarious and wildly popular YouTube animated short film I Wanna Be Famous; has a cool MySpace page, and an even cooler blog; to get a feel for Jessica’s amazing range and talent, please click here), and NYC stand-ups Nick Turner, Matt Ruby, Dan HIrshon, Doug Smith, Damien Lemon, and John Szeluga, performing at The Triple Crown Alehouse & Restaurant (330 7th Aveue, between 28th and 29th Streets) at Sean Donnelly’s Lil’ Seany Boy

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): One of the gutsiest and most hilarious troupes in comedy history—and the Cage Match Champion for two years in a row!—genius improvisors Death by Roo Roo

9:00 pm ($7): Organic & energetic improv by the four guys of 4 Track!

9:30 pm ($10): “A cabaret of darkly funny songs and topical sketch comedy about culture and politics,” following sold out shows at Joe’s Pub: Political Subversities

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15): Ted Greenberg (Emmy-winning David Letterman writer) performing a fun, fast-paced theatrical comedy show—complete with audience interaction and audience rides home!—at The Complete Performer

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): An all-star improv troupe led by brilliant UCBT artistic director Anthony King: Reuben Williams

10:30 pm ($5): Vibrant improv from Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney (Statues of Liberty) and Leslie Korein as comedy trio Trike

[TOP PICK] 11:00 ($8): NYC’s heavy metal version of a sketch troupe, which doesn’t always ht the mark but provides odd, unsettling, and fearless dark comedy—and won this year’s ECNY Award for Best Sketch Group: Murderfist: Late and Dirty

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 2/18/10

February 18, 2010

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

Melanie Hamlett, Giulia Rozzi, and Margot Leitman tell hot tales of "Misunderstanding" at Stripped Stories

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($12): The debut of a news-based show with comedy games and funny conversation, tonight including writer/actor Brian Donovan, political journalist Jacob Weisberg (Newsweek, Slate), TV writer/producer Gideon Evans (The Daily Show), and writer/commentator Alison Rosen (McSweeney’s, podcast Alison Rosen Is Your New Best Friend): The News Distillery

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($18): One of the highlights of FringeNYC 2008 was Allen Warnock and Andrea Alton (members of sketch troupe Freedumb) teaming up to create hilarious characters in a very silly and fun show—for my review, please click here. The production has now been revived for a commercial run through February 28th: Carl & Shelly: Best Friends Forever

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Two of the funniest and most loveable sketch comics alive, Katherine Bryant and Chris O’Connor (half of sketch troupe Fearsome) team up with also hilarious sketch comics Mike Still (sketch troupe A Week of Kindness) and John Phillips (sketch troupe Trophy Dad) to perform a comedic play about a college buddy returning after 10 years to ruin his friend’s life; and disarmingly charming comedy duo Mamrie Hart and Stephen Soroka performing silly skits and—most memorably—tackling the news on the fly based on audience requests, in the double-bill Mace Bacon: The Worst Guy Ever and BoF in This Old Thing

8:00 pm ($5): Sharp improvisors directed by James Eason “take an audience suggestion and break it into a million funny pieces,” and veteran improvisors play with “elements of monoscene, deconstruction, and La Ronde,” in the double-bill The Deconstruction and Sleepover

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): Wonderful star stand-ups Anthony Jeselnik, Christian Finnegan , and Wyatt Cenac, plus musical guest Gretchen Parlato, performing at Comedy Below Canal

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): At this month’s edition of NYC’s best show of comedic sexual tales, the theme is Misunderstanding; and the thoroughly wonderful storytellers are Melanie Hamlett, (Moth StorySlam Champion; stellar & unique writer/performer who does cross-country tours while living in her truck and posting hilarious photo-caption reports on her adventures at blog Melanie Hamlett: Wandering Narcoleptic—for illustrated tales of shucking corn and conversations with mermaids, please click here and here), Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, Moth GrandSlam Champion), ace musical guests Stuckey & Murray, and sensual hosts Margot Leitman & Giulia Rozzi’s, all performing at Stripped Stories

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:30 pm ($15 online if you use code VIPFEB [otherwise $20], plus 2-item minimum): Thoroughly wonderful stand-ups John Mulaney, Hannibal Buress, Tom Shillue, Rachel Feinstein, Marina Franklin join comedy giant Todd Barry at the elegant Comix Comedy Club: Todd Barry and Friends

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Two vibrant improv troupes—The Brothers Hines and Robber Baron—compete for audience laughs and votes at the raucous Cage Match

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.